Bookmark and Share


Ancient Egypt /
Religion
1. Introduction
2. Gods
3. Concepts
4. Cult
5. Cult centres
6. Necropolises
7. Structures

Detailed articleAncient Egypt



























Open the online Arabic language course






Open map of Ancient EgyptAncient Egypt / Religion / Gods /
Bes



Image of a Bes from the Roman Birth House, Dendera, Egypt.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

Image of a Bes from the Roman Birth House, Dendera, Egypt.

Gigantic statue of Bes. Istanbul Archaeology Museum, Istanbul, Turkey.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

Gigantic statue of Bes. Istanbul Archaeology Museum, Istanbul, Turkey. Photo: Garrett Ziegler.

Category of protective gods of Ancient Egypt. While one of this group was named Bes, there were more gods belonging to the category: Aha, Amam, Hayet, Ihty, Mefdjet, Menew, Segeb, Sopdu and Tetenu. All these have similar representations, but their qualities could vary.
The most common representation of Bes is as a dwarf with a large head, usually grinning, sneering or possibly laughing. He has staring eyes and a protruding tongue.
Although little regarded in the usual study of religion, the Bes gods were among the most popular of Ancient Egypt, and among the most revered. This is probably because the Bes gods were at a level within reach of ordinary people and, thus could be revered in private ceremonies. Moreover, their popularity is due to the principal functions of the Bes; different forms of protection, of children, of pregnant women and during birth. The protection against snakes was another daily duty of the Bes.
The Bes were male gods, and popular within all classes of the society. Bes was very much involved in the protection.
Despite their popular and common background, Bes, over centuries, came to be associated with some of the principal gods, Re, Hathor and Horus. They even formed a joint god with Horus; Beset.





Confused? Try to find a good place to start learning about Ancient Egypt in
Where to begin?Detailed article






By Tore Kjeilen